Even though I was utterly frozen on this pre-Christmas Thames-side sketching day, I had promised my son I’d draw him the bridge that goes up and down, and goddammit I was gonna draw it. Tower Bridge, as all Americans know, was built so that their taxis from Heathrow Airport could cross the river on the way to their hotels in South Kensington. On this day, there was lots of snow everywhere (it wasn’t that I didn’t fancy colouring in the grass, it really was that white). My poor micron pen by that point was ready to retire for the day, and was not cooperating in the chilly air.
The best way to warm up after a load of winter urban sketching is to go into a pub that does big hot chicken and mushroom pies. Oh yeah! And a nice beer from Yorkshire, a ‘Cropton Yorkshire Warrior’. The beer wasn’t warm, by the way. I’m always asked whether I like warm beer, being a Brit, but it’s a misconception. Lots of our beers and ales are indeed best served at room temperature, but people forget, it’s bloody cold in Britain, and we can’t afford heating any more, our rooms are freezing. The pie however was burn-yer-gob-off hot, and so British you could almost hear it humming Land of Hope and Glory.